Now I remember, as a kid, sometimes being allowed to scrape out and eat the last of the raw cake mixture after the rest of it had disappeared in to the oven. Wonderful! Here's a cake recipe that cuts out that cooking bit.
I like the idea of ‘Raw Food’. That is, eating only food that has not been heated or ‘cooked’ at a temperature higher than 40 ˚C (104 ˚F). I say I like the idea and most of the Raw Foods I’ve tried I have enjoyed; I just don’t want to cut the cooked food out of my diet…. yet.
Anyway, this Chocolate cake is made with no cooking, no eggs, no added fat, no cooking…. And one (perhaps) surprising ingredient!
Much of the basis for this recipe came from www.therawtarian.com. Lots of good stuff to be found on that website.
Here in Greece we have a tradition of cutting a cake to welcome the New Year. Called a Vassilopitta, this cake is cut in homes, businesses, clubs and indeed in pretty much anywhere where people get together, on the first time they meet up after the turn of the year. Usually the cake is a simple, though tasty sponge cake with a coin hidden in it. The person who finds the coin in their slice is assured of good fortune for the year. I made this somewhat untraditional version as Christiane’s Meditation group’s Vassilopitta. Still a hid a coin it though!
Raw Chocolate Cake
You will need:
1 1/2 cups Walnuts
1 1/2 cups Pecans, or Hazlenuts or Almonds…. Or mixture of these.
1 1/2 cups Dates or Figs. If using dried figs you may need a little water
1 1/2s cup Raisins
1 tablespoon Honey
6 tablespoons raw Cocoa Powder
2 teaspoons Vanilla extract
1. In a food processor, process the nuts until they are very well blended, so that they look like a chunky flour.
2. Then, add everything else to the food processor and continue blending. If your food processor is like mine then the whole mix may well be too much for it….. We are talking one big sticky mass here. I empty the nuts into out a bowl, then process the dates, honey, raisins and so on and mix the whole lot together in the bowl afterwards. Don’t be tempted to add very much extra liquid.
3. Keep on blending/mixing until your mixture looks like a big ball of dough. There shouldn't be big chunks of anything. Get your hands into the bowl and knead it all together. This is a messy, though fun business(!).
4. Once you've got a big raw chocolate cake dough ball, the cake is basically done; you just need to figure out the presentation (shape and icing or whatever you want).
5. Just press the dough into the desired shape for whatever you want to make. For example, just take a nice cake plate and press the dough into a cake shape. Try and resist the temptation to lick your fingers until you have finished handling and shaping the cake. I find it works well to get it more or less into the shape you want and then move straight to step 6…..
6. Cover and allow to cool in the fridge overnight. Once cooled, the cake will be much firmer and this is a good time to trim the cake to it’s final shape. It’s good to eat now…. Or you can go for a wonderfully creamy chocolate icing to finish it off….. Kid yourself that it’s healthy! Actually it probably is, compared to many chocolate cakes you may meet.
Raw Chocolate ‘Cream’ Icing
Actually, I think this icing would work very well on all sorts of more traditional cakes too.
You will need:
1 ripe Avocado
1 or 2 tablespoons of Cocoa Powder
3 or 4 tablespoons of Maple Syrup or Honey or Agave syrup
Make the Icing by blending together the maple syrup (or honey or Agave), the cocoa powder, and the flesh from the avocado until it’s uniform in color and texture. Taste it and adjust the sweetness if need be.
Spread over the cake.
Garnish with crushed hazelnuts.
I have adopted the policy of not telling new guests about the Avocado until after they have enjoyed their cake. The revelation nearly always gets a wonderfully surprised reaction.